New Rochelle, NY-Points of Interest

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The Jacob Leisler Monument

North and Broadview Aves., erected in 1913 by the Huguenot Chapter D.A.R. and the Huguenot and Historical Association of New Rochelle, is the only American memorial to Jacob Leisler (1640-91). * (The underlined statement which reflects the actual text from the original publication has been challenged as incorrect; please see footnote below.) Following the abdication of James II and the overthrow of Edmund Andros in  Boston, Leisler, a German immigrant, seized control and ruled the Province of New York from 1689 until the arrival of Governor Henry Sloughter, appointed by William and Mary. After laying down his power Leisler was tried for treason, found guilty, and executed, but his name was later cleared in England. Since no portrait of Leisler exists, the statue is largely imaginary, presenting a heroic figure dressed in a long cloak and a Dutch beaver hat and carrying a large staff.  The sculptor was Solon H. Borglum.

The Thomas Paine Monument

Paine and North Aves., enclosed by an iron fence, consists of a bronze bust on a square granite column, the cap of which has been chipped in several places. The monument was originally erected in 1839 and was restored in 1881; the bronze, dedicated on May 30, 1899, was modeled by Wilson MacDonald. The monument stands close to the site of the grave in which Paine was originally buried.

The Paine Cottage

SE. corner of North and Paine Aves., a two-story post-Colonial frame house with shingle exterior, rough stone foundation, and solid blinds, has been moved from its original site (120 Paine Avenue) on a near-by hilltop, where it was occupied by Paine. It houses the Huguenot and Historical Association of New Rochelle; the collection includes a Franklin stove given Paine by Benjamin Franklin and the chair that Paine always used when writing.

The Paine Memorial House

989 North Ave., a two-story structure of natural stone, was erected in 1925 by the Thomas Paine National Historical Association. Ground for the building was broken by Thomas A. Edison, an ardent admirer of Paine's writings. The house contains a number of Paine's personal effects, including the trunk in which he carried the State papers of the Second Continental Congress, of which he was secretary, from Philadelphia after Howe's capture of the city in 1777. Across a wall of the main room is a painted replica of Paine's Rainbow Flag, which he proposed as an international symbol to be used by neutral ships in time of war. Photo static copies of extant letters, first editions of Paine's works, his death mask, and a fragment of the mutilated gravestone complete the collection. 

Thomas Paine (1737-1809), author of Rights of Man and The Age of Reason, was a participant in both the American and French Revolutions. His first great work, Common Sense, published anonymously in January 1776, crystallized Colonial opposition to the Mother Country into a demand for independence and strongly influenced the subsequent action of the Continental Congress. After the war Pennsylvania presented him with 500 and New York with 300 acres of confiscated land in New Rochelle. After 15 stormy years in England and France he returned to the United States in 1802, and in 1804 made the New Rochelle farm his home.

Hudson Park

It is at the foot of Hudson Park Road, 13 acres along the city's harbor front, includes a public beach, the city boathouse and greenhouses, the shore station of the United States Coast Guard, and several yacht and rowing clubs. During the summer months excursion boats make frequent tours up the Sound as far as Playland and Rye Beach. The present park is traditionally accepted as the landing place of the first Huguenot settlers. A granite boulder with bronze tablets commemorates the event. The monument overlooks the boat-studded inlets of the harbor and the still waters of the Sound, with the Oyster Bay section of Long Island a blue ridge on the horizon. This is a favorite shore vantage point for watching yacht races on the Sound during the summer. 

Fort Slocum

(Adm. by pass obtainable from officer in charge at dock), on David's Island, reached by the Fort Slocum ferry, foot of Fort Slocum Road, is visible from the dock as a group of Army barracks. It is the overseas recruiting depot for foreign service enlistments of all casuals east of the Mississippi River.  About 1,500 men a month are shipped, after a period of training, for service in China, the Philippines, Hawaii, and the Canal Zone. Visitors are permitted to inspect the old gun pits and military galleries of Civil War vintage.

The First Presbyterian Church

50 Pintard Ave., designed by John Russell Pope in the manner of a New England Georgian Colonial church, was built in 1928 as the successor to the building erected by the French Reformed congregation of the Huguenot pioneers. The tower and spire, forming one transept, are graceful and lofty; the opposite transept wall has a Palladian window. The principal facade has a wood Ionic portico and pediment. The interior, lighted by narrow, arched, many-paned windows, is adorned with Roman Doric columns and pilasters. The vaulted ceilings of the nave and transept have a groined intersection.

The Pintard Manse, E. of the church, is a story-and-a-half early Georgian Colonial dwelling, used after 1774 as a country residence by Lewis Pintard, prominent merchant and patriot of New York City. The white-shingled walls and the delicately carved cornice act as a graceful, harmonious foil to the monumental stone church adjoining. The neoclassic porch and probably the dormers are later additions.

Trinity Church

NW. corner of Huguenot and Division Sts., is a Victorian Gothic church of the Civil War period, built of granite with brownstone trim. The roof is covered with slate of variegated colors, and the cast-iron cresting on the ridge is characteristic of the period. The spire is well-proportioned, light, and graceful. At the rear of the church is the city's oldest cemetery, laid out by the Huguenots. Today the main line of the New York, New Haven & Hartford Railroad cuts through, its tracks at a level with the lichen-clad gravestones.


*The abovementioned statement has been challenged as incorrect by the archivist of the National Society of the Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR), requesting that a correction be made. Her challenge is based on the following: "In the paragraph regarding the Jacob Leisler Monument, it states that the monument was 'erected in 1913 by the Huguenot Chapter D.A.R.' Actually, there was never a Huguenot Chapter of the DAR.  That chapter was part of an organization named the Daughters
of the Revolution (DR), which was a similar but completely separate group (and no longer in existence)."

Christina R. Lehman
Assistant Archivist, Office of the Historian General
National Society Daughters of the American Revolution
1776 D Street, NW
Washington, DC 20006
Phone: 202-628-1776 ext. 384

The error may be typographical when the book went into publication or incorrectly mentioned. Since the transcript from Page: 246 is verbatim from the book: "New York--A Guide to the Empire State Publisher: Oxford University Press--New York Copyright: 1940 Compiled by the workers of the Writers' Program of the Work Projects Administration in the State of New York and sponsored by New York State Historical Association.", I cannot make any changes, but instead I have added this footnote. If anyone has a difference of opinion on this matter, please contact: Ms. Lehman.

Miriam Medina
Website Administrator


Website: The History
Article Name: New Rochelle, NY-Points of Interest
Researcher/Transcriber Miriam Medina


BIBLIOGRAPHY......New York--A Guide to the Empire State
Publisher: Oxford University Press--New York Copyright: 1940
Compiled by the workers of the Writers' Program of the Work Projects Administration in the State of New York and sponsored by New York State Historical Association.
Time & Date Stamp: